Vikings drop first game of best-of-three series against Ohlone College in first round of CCCAA NorCal Regionals


Aaron Tolentino

Vikings have a mound visit during their playoff game against Ohlone College in Fremont on May 4, 2018.

Aaron Tolentino, Sports editor

The Diablo Valley College softball team lost on the road to the Ohlone College Renegades 7-1 in the first game of a best-of-three series in the first round of the California Community College Athletic Association NorCal Regionals on Friday afternoon in Fremont.

Outfielder Kathryn Cassin led off the game reaching on a throwing error and stole second base. She eventually scored on first baseman Julianna Pichardo’s sac fly to give the Vikings the early 1-0 lead.

However, that proved to be all the runs DVC could muster.

Ohlone answered right back to tie the game 1-1 in the bottom of the first. Arrianna Whitlock then went deep to give the Renegades the lead 2-1 in the second.

After three innings, Vikings pitcher Sita Manoa gave up three runs and was pulled by head coach Dennis Luquet for Brittany Martinez during the fourth inning.

“I think Sita needs to have better control of her pitches,” said Luquet. “She was behind almost every batter in the whole game.”

The fourth inning proved to be costly for the Vikings. Two errors contributed to a three-run fourth. Catcher Elvia Alvarado committed an error in an attempt to throw a runner out at third, and second baseman Madeline Cervantes could not handle a groundball cleanly.

The grounder took an odd bounce due to the turf field at Ohlone College’s field that the Vikings are not used to. Nonetheless, that is why Luquet had his team practice taking groundballs on DVC’s football field, but ultimately, one mishandled groundball cost them a couple runs.

Offensively, the Vikings did have their opportunity to rally but did not cash in.

In the fifth inning, shortstop Nikki Mason reached on an infield single. Pichardo and Alvarado drew a couple of walks, respectively. The bases were loaded with only one out, but two consecutive flyouts by Martinez and Manoa ended any potential comeback rally.

“Hitting, we weren’t hitting today at all, definitely not seeing the ball to contact,” said outfielder Julia Kiester.

Luquet felt that his team lacked aggression at the plate and took too many pitches for strikes. He also thought the young Vikings team of mostly freshmen were a bit nervous playing in their first playoff game.

The Vikings must win both games against Ohlone the following day in order to advance to the next round of the CCCAA NorCal Regionals. First pitch is scheduled for noon in Fremont and 2 p.m. if DVC forces a third game.